Tarot Card Meanings – How Reversed Cards and Numerology Effect a Reading

Memorizing the tarot meanings of all 78 cards in a deck can be a daunting task for anyone, especially when you take into account the ways reversals, astrology, and numerology can have an effect on tarot card meanings

Overall, the meaning of each card remains similar from one deck to the next.  The Tower card, for example, will herald a major life event of profound, sometimes shocking proportions, regardless of which deck you prefer.

Upside Down and Topsy Turvy – Does it Really Effect Your Tarot Card Meanings?

Some readers don’t even bother with reversed cards, preferring to read from decks non-reversal styled backs – such as the popular Crowley Thoth deck. Tarot meanings are often dynamic, and intuitive, depending more on the situation and reader than the card itself.  Because each card runs the spectrum of positive and negative, passive and active, it’s a good idea to look draw multiple cards and gain insight by looking at the larger picture rather than an individual image when digging for the deeper tarot card meanings.

tarot card meanings

Suits, Courts, and Pips a Plenty

Tarot card meanings are further divided up amongst the individual cards within the minor Arcana.  Each suit bears a significance, whether it’s the way the pentacles/coins effect your tangible, material world, or the way the swords influence your thoughts.  Pages, Princes, Queens, Kings, Knights, Princesses, take your pick, these individuals are just as significant when it comes to tarot card meanings as the numbers upon the pip cards making up each individual suit.

Aces represent the pure, primal energy of each suit, the seed which grows and develops as you move from numbered cards through the court. Understanding the significance of numbers, elements, astrology, and other symbols applied to each card will help deepen your comprehension of the tarot card meanings. When it comes to building confidence in quickly gleaning tarot card meanings, daily practice is necessary.

What Makes that Arcana so Major Anyway?

The Hero’s Journey – When laid out in order, the Major Arcana tells the story of the Hero’s Journey.  This is the story of life which every single person experiences as part of their personal growth and development.  This story repeats over and over as we move through our daily experiences and personal interactions.  Many of these lessons we have to repeat over and over until we internalize the deeper meaning and apply the education to creating positive and lasting change. 

Experience vs. Introspection – The first half of the Major Arcana deals primarily with personal experience, branching out into new areas of the unknown and the various encounters that occur. To maintain balance between the external and internal world the later half of the Major Arcana deals with the keen insight gained by personal experiences.  Consider the significance of the Fool as he meets the Magician for the first time and is astounded by this wizard’s fast-talk and sleight of hand, then compare how the Fool has grown by the time he encounters the Devil.

Emotional and Psychological Growth – By the time the Fool, our Hero in this journey, arrives at the destination of the World (or Universe) card he’s experienced profound growth on an emotional and psychological level.  The last card in the Major Arcana is really no different from the first card, the Fool and the World are mirror images of each other, particularly in a numerology sense – each represents new beginnings and the desire to embrace these beginnings free from fear.

Tarot Card Meanings – Personal Growth One Card at a Time

When it comes to providing accurate readings for yourself and others, developing a close relationship with your tarot deck is every bit as important as learning the tarot card meanings.  Start by drawing one to three cards each day and keep a log of what you draw, and your sense of the tarot meanings.  By practicing in this manner you may notice some significant changes in your life.  You may become more aware of active influences at play in your life, you may also feel more in tune with the world around you which in turn allows you to feel more in control of your larger destiny.  You’ll certainly feel more confident when reading for others, simply because you no longer need to refer to a vague guidebook when searching for tarot card meanings.